Injuries happen in football. While it’s commonplace for teams to be stricken by the injury bug, the New England Patriots have been hit pretty hard in recent years.
But where the serious injuries have happened is rather unexpected. New England’s top draft selections have been dropping like flies, with N’Keal Harry the latest victim.
For the Patriots, the loss is all too familiar. Harry was set to be a big part of New England’s offense as a rookie, particularly in the red zone. But once again, the Patriots will be without the rookie for a large chunk of the season.
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Who else has been stricken by the injury bug? You’ll be surprised how many Patriots draft picks have missed most of their rookie season.
Just last season, the Patriots top pick, Wynn, was sidelined after tearing his Achilles in the preseason. Wynn was one of the top offensive tackles in the country when he entered the draft and his selection meant he would be protecting Tom Brady’s blindside. But the injury severely derailed his development though he has recovered and appears set to do the job just fine in his second season. It was a tough break for New England.
He was just traded to Denver after a disappointing preseason. But what was most disappointing was him missing his entire rookie season. Dawson was placed on IR coming out of the preseason and was later activated but never appeared in a game. The injury relegated him out of job and, coupled with the development of J.C. Jackson and the drafting of Joejuan Williams, rendered him no longer necessary.
This poor guy still can’t get healthy. He tore his ACL during training camp as a rookie and missed his entire rookie season. Upon returning last year he was only active in six games. This year, a trip to the IR again. Rivers was supposed to be a premier pass rusher but has ended up missing most of his career to injury.
Another offensive lineman to go down, he suffered from blood clots in his lungs during rookie training camp, the same ailment as current Patriots’ center David Andrews. Garcia missed his entire rookie season in 2017 and dropped a significant amount of weight in the process – almost 40 pounds. He was cut by the Patriots before his second season.
Easley did play in 11 games as a rookie but a pair of knee injuries in his time with the Patriots hindered his on-field production. Currently a free agent, he was felled by yet another knee injury with the Los Angeles Rams last season.
The Patriots took Ben Watson with their first pick all the way back in the 2004 NFL Draft. It was a rocky few months for Watson as a professional. He held out of training camp due to a contract dispute, fired his agent, and nearly lost the starting job to Daniel Graham. He eventually became the starter, but after two catches in his first game, he was sidelined with a knee injury that cost him the season.